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Packers' Dom Capers: Jay Cutler's Bears different team


Green Bay Packers defensive coordinator Dom Capers has dominated Jay Cutler over the course of the quarterback's career with the Chicago Bears.

Capers is 7-1 against Cutler-led Bears teams since the signal-caller moved to the NFC North in 2009. Packers defenses have held Cutler to a 55.3 completion percentage with 17 interceptions, and just eight touchdowns. Cutler also has been sacked 29 times in those eight games.

However, the defensive coordinator knows that he's not facing the same Bears offense this time around.

"It's a totally different team now from what we've played in the past," Capers said, per the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "These guys, it's a new offensive philosophy. They really improved their offensive line, tremendously. They pass protect better now than what they have in the past. ... They've got more weapons than what they've had."

With Marc Trestman at the helm, Cutler was having the most productive season of his Bears tenure until injuries interrupted his season. Having the 6-foot-4 Brandon Marshall and 6-foot-3 Alshon Jeffery to throw to is also an improvement over former No. 1 receivers Devin Hester, Johnny Knox and Devin Aromashodu.

"A couple years ago, their receiving corps looked a lot different than it does now," Capers said. "You've got their tight end (Martellus Bennett), who's a big target and a really good athlete and receiver. I don't know if anyone else has two more physical receivers than what they have. And a running back (Matt Forte) that's a great threat out of the backfield catching the ball and has run for 1,230 yards. So there's a lot of different weapons there."

Capers' defense looks a lot different as well. His unit is young, injured and has struggled most of the 2013 season. It's fair to wonder if Capers' corps is playing for the coach's job Sunday.

With forecasts calling for cold and snowy weather at Soldier Field on Sunday afternoon, the NFC North title could go to whichever of the two mediocre defenses comes up with the late stop.

The latest "Around The League Podcast" delivered a Christmas gift, analyzing the chaotic playoff picture in both conferences.


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